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April 29, 2022

Apple to face new antitrust charges in Brussels over in-app payment practices

Apple will face new antitrust charges in Brussels next week for how it allegedly blocked rivals from using Apple Pay, its mobile payment system, reported Financial Times (FT).

The development comes as the European Union prepares to challenge the market monopoly of the $2.5trn tech giant.

Apple will be sued for failing to comply with the EU law in operating Apple Pay, four sources aware of the matter told FT.

The investigator, led by EU competition commissioner Margrethe Vestager, plans to accuse Apple of unfairly restricting rivals including PayPal and certain banks from accessing its mobile wallet system.    

If the charges are upheld, the iPhone maker is expected to incur hefty fines worth up to 10% of its global turnover.

The case, which was filed in 2020, is said to be one of the many investigations launched against Apple in Brussels.  

The tech giant is also facing investigation in Brussels in connection with practices related to its books and music streaming services within App Store.

Apple’s regulatory troubles

Apple has found itself in the regulatory crosshairs several times in recent years.

In January this year, the company was penalised by the Dutch competition regulator for failing to comply with a payment-related order.

The same month, Apple agreed to include third-party payment options on its App Store in South Korea to comply with the law.

The company was previously accused by EU regulators of breaching antitrust laws by not allowing developers to provide other buying options outside of apps, to iPhone and iPad users.

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